"First-Ever Survey Predicts Up To a 15-Foot Sea-Level Rise" --Melting of East Antarctic Ice Sheet Could Cripple Major US Cities

 
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The world's largest ice sheet may be less stable than previously thought, posing an even greater threat to Florida's coastline. The first ever marine geologic survey of East Antarctica's Sabrina Coast, published this week in Nature, concludes that some regions of the massive East Antarctic Ice Sheet have been sensitive to climate change for millions of years. Much like the West Antarctic Ice Sheet, this region of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet is grounded below sea level and local glaciers are experiencing ice mass loss due to ocean warming.

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NASA's Mars MAVEN Mission Sheds Light on Search for Life-Bearing Alien Planets

 
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 "The MAVEN mission tells us that Mars lost substantial amounts of its atmosphere over time, changing the planet's habitability," said David Brain, a MAVEN co-investigator and a professor at the Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics at the University of Colorado Boulder. "We can use Mars, a planet that we know a lot about, as a laboratory for studying rocky planets outside our solar system, which we don't know much about yet."

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Today's "Planet Earth Report" --New Antarctica Discovery, Stoned-Ape-Evolution Theory, Ancient DNA Reveals Inca Mystery

 
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December 13, 2017: Today's links to headline stories from around the world on the threats, opportunities, and dangers facing our fragile planet --along with an occasional dash of humor, popular culture, and an intriguing conspiracy theory or two.  

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NASA Deep-Dive Update: Kepler Mission's "Big Alien-Planet Discovery" --Live-Streamed Tomorrow, Thursday

 

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 The Kepler Space Telescope is now in its fifteenth observing campaign of its K2 extended mission, studying more than 23,000 objects located in the direction of the constellation Scorpius. NASA officials said the discovery to be announced tomorrow was made "by researchers using machine learning from Google." Machine learning is an approach to artificial intelligence, and demonstrates new ways of analyzing Kepler data."

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Today's Top Science Headline --Jellyfish Have Superpowers --"Surviving of All Five of Earth's Major Extinction Events"

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Jellyfish, largely unchanged for at least 500 million years, surviving all five major extinction events in the Earth’s past that wiped out 99% of all life, are among the most abundant organisms in the sea. Recent research suggests there are about 38 million ton of them just in the mesopelagic, the upper 200 meters of ocean. What’s more, they are common in all oceans and have colonized the majority of marine habitats including the deep sea.

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The Alien Observatory --"Deciphering a Non-DNA-Based Alien Genetic Code"

 

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Detecting DNA—or its extraterrestrial equivalent—may be critical technology for future missions in the search for life beyond Earth. NASA scientists have justifiably focused on water because all biology as we know it requires this fluid. A wild card, however, is whether alternative liquids can also suffice as life-enablers. For example, Saturn’s frigid moon Titan is awash in inky seas of the hydrocarbon methane.

 

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